Health Risk Assessment of Heavy Metals in the Contaminated and Uncontaminated Soils

Application of health risk assessment methods is important in order to comprehend the risk of human exposure to heavy metals and other dangerous pollutants. Four soil samples were collected at distances of 10, 20, 30 m and the control 100 m away from the dump site at depths of 0.3, 0.6 and 0.9 m. The collected soil samples were examined for Zn, Cu, Pb, Cd and Ni using standard methods. The health risks via the main pathways of human exposure to heavy metal were detected using relevant standard equations. Hazard quotient was calculated to determine non-carcinogenic health risk for each individual heavy metal. Life time cancer risk was calculated to determine the cumulative life cancer rating for each exposure pathway. The estimated health risk values for adults and children were generally lower than the reference dose. The calculated hazard quotient for the ingestion, inhalation and dermal contact pathways were less than unity. This means that there is no detrimental concern to the health on human exposure to heavy metals in contaminated soil. The life time cancer risk 5.4 × 10-2 was higher than the acceptable threshold value of 1 × 10-4 which is reflected to have significant health effects on human exposure to heavy metals in contaminated soil. Good hygienic practices are recommended to ease the potential risk to children and adult who are exposed to contaminated soils. Also, the local authorities should be made aware of such health risks for the purpose of planning the management strategy accordingly.

Soil/Phytofisionomy Relationship in Southeast of Chapada Diamantina, Bahia, Brazil

This study aims to characterize the physicochemical aspects of the soils of southeastern Chapada Diamantina - Bahia related to the phytophysiognomies of this area, rupestrian field, small savanna (savanna fields), small dense savanna (savanna fields), savanna (Cerrado), dry thorny forest (Caatinga), dry thorny forest/savanna, scrub (Carrasco - ecotone), forest island (seasonal semi-deciduous forest - Capão) and seasonal semi-deciduous forest. To achieve the research objective, soil samples were collected in each plant formation and analyzed in the soil laboratory of ESALQ - USP in order to identify soil fertility through the determination of pH, organic matter, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, potential acidity, sum of bases, cation exchange capacity and base saturation. The composition of soil particles was also checked; that is, the texture, step made in the terrestrial ecosystems laboratory of the Department of Ecology of USP and in the soil laboratory of ESALQ. Another important factor also studied was to show the variations in the vegetation cover in the region as a function of soil moisture in the different existing physiographic environments. Another study carried out was a comparison between the average soil moisture data with precipitation data from three locations with very different phytophysiognomies. The soils found in this part of Bahia can be classified into 5 classes, with a predominance of oxisols. All of these classes have a great diversity of physical and chemical properties, as can be seen in photographs and in particle size and fertility analyzes. The deepest soils are located in the Central Pediplano of Chapada Diamantina where the dirty field, the clean field, the executioner and the semideciduous seasonal forest (Capão) are located, and the shallower soils were found in the rupestrian field, dry thorny forest, and savanna fields, the latter located on a hillside. As for the variations in water in the region's soil, the data indicate that there were large spatial variations in humidity in both the rainy and dry periods.

Contaminant Transport in Soil from a Point Source

The work sought to understand the pattern of movement of contaminant from a continuous point source through soil. The soil used was sandy-loam in texture. The contaminant used was municipal solid waste landfill leachate, introduced as a point source through an entry point located at the center of top layer of the soil tank. Analyses were conducted after maturity periods of 50 and 80 days. The maximum change in chemical concentration was observed on soil samples at a radial distance of 0.25 m. Finite element approximation based model was used to assess the future prediction, management and remediation in the polluted area. The actual field data collected for the case study were used to calibrate the modeling and thus simulated the flow pattern of the pollutants through soil. MATLAB R2015a was used to visualize the flow of pollutant through the soil. Dispersion coefficient at 0.25 and 0.50 m radial distance from the point of application of leachate shows a measure of the spreading of a flowing leachate due to the nature of the soil medium, with its interconnected channels distributed at random in all directions. Surface plots of metals on soil after maturity period of 80 days shows a functional relationship between a designated dependent variable (Y), and two independent variables (X and Z). Comparison of measured and predicted profile transport along the depth after 50 and 80 days of leachate application and end of the experiment shows that there were no much difference between the predicted and measured concentrations as they were all lying close to each other. For the analysis of contaminant transport, finite difference approximation based model was very effective in assessing the future prediction, management and remediation in the polluted area. The experiment gave insight into the most likely pattern of movement of contaminant as a result of continuous percolations of the leachate on soil. This is important for contaminant movement prediction and subsequent remediation of such soils.

Effect of Nanobentonite Particles on Geotechnical Properties of Kerman Clay

Improving the geotechnical properties of soil has always been one of the issues in geotechnical engineering. Traditional materials have been used to improve and stabilize soils to date, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Although the soil stabilization by adding materials such as cement, lime, bitumen, etc. is one of the effective methods to improve the geotechnical properties of soil, but nanoparticles are one of the newest additives which can improve the loose soils. This research is intended to study the effect of adding nanobentonite on soil engineering properties, especially the unconfined compression strength and maximum dry unit weight, using clayey soil with low liquid limit (CL) from Kerman (Iran). Nanobentonite was mixed with soil in three different percentages (i.e. 3, 5, 7% by weight of the parent soil) with different curing time (1, 7 and 28 days). The unconfined compression strength, liquid and plastic limits and plasticity index of treated specimens were measured by unconfined compression and Atterberg limits test. It was found that increase in nanobentonite content resulted in increase in the unconfined compression strength, liquid and plastic limits of the clayey soil and reduce in plasticity index.

Influence of Plastic Waste Reinforcement on Compaction and Consolidation Behavior of Silty Soil

In recent decades, the amount of solid waste production has been rising. In the meantime, plastic waste is one of the major parts of urban solid waste, so, recycling plastic waste from water bottles has become a serious challenge in the whole world. The experimental program includes the study of the effect of waste plastic fibers on maximum dry density (MDD), optimum moisture content (OMC) with different sizes and contents. Also, one dimensional consolidation tests were carried out to evaluate the benefit of utilizing randomly distributed waste plastics fiber to improve the engineering behavior of a tested soils. Silty soil specimens were prepared and tested at five different percentages of plastic waste content (i.e. 0.25%, 0.50%, 0.75%, 1% and 1.25% by weight of the parent soil). The size of plastic chips used, are 4 mm, 8 mm and 12 mm long and 4 mm in width. The results show that with the addition of waste plastic fibers, the MDD and OMC and also the compressibility of soil decrease significantly.

Evaluation of Settlement of Coastal Embankments Using Finite Elements Method

Coastal embankments play an important role in coastal structures by reducing the effect of the wave forces and controlling the movement of sediments. Many coastal areas are underlain by weak and compressible soils. Estimation of during construction settlement of coastal embankments is highly important in design and safety control of embankments and appurtenant structures. Accordingly, selecting and establishing of an appropriate model with a reasonable level of complication is one of the challenges for engineers. Although there are advanced models in the literature regarding design of embankments, there is not enough information on the prediction of their associated settlement, particularly in coastal areas having considerable soft soils. Marine engineering study in Iran is important due to the existence of two important coastal areas located in the northern and southern parts of the country. In the present study, the validity of Terzaghi’s consolidation theory has been investigated. In addition, the settlement of these coastal embankments during construction is predicted by using special methods in PLAXIS software by the help of appropriate boundary conditions and soil layers. The results indicate that, for the existing soil condition at the site, some parameters are important to be considered in analysis. Consequently, a model is introduced to estimate the settlement of the embankments in such geotechnical conditions.

Effect of Silt Presence on Shear Strength Parameters of Unsaturated Sandy Soils

Direct shear test is widely used in soil mechanics experiment to determine the shear strength parameters of granular soils. For analysis of soil stability problems such as bearing capacity, slope stability and lateral pressure on soil retaining structures, the shear strength parameters must be known well. In the present study, shear strength parameters are determined in silty-sand mixtures. Direct shear tests are performed on 161 Firoozkooh sand with different silt content at a relative density of 70% in three vertical stress of 100, 150, and 200 kPa. Wet tamping method is used for soil sample preparation, and the results include diagrams of shear stress versus shear deformation and sample height changes against shear deformation. Accordingly, in different silt percent, the shear strength parameters of the soil such as internal friction angle and dilation angle are calculated and compared. According to the results, when the sample contains up to 10% silt, peak shear strength and internal friction angle have an upward trend. However, if the sample contains 10% to 50% of silt a downward trend is seen in peak shear strength and internal friction angle.

A Comparison between Russian and Western Approach for Deep Foundation Design

Varying methodologies are considered for pile design for both Russian and Western approaches. Although both approaches rely on toe and side frictional resistances, different calculation methods are proposed to estimate pile capacity. The Western approach relies on compactness (internal friction angle) of soil for cohesionless soils and undrained shear strength for cohesive soils. The Russian approach relies on grain size for cohesionless soils and liquidity index for cohesive soils. Though most recommended methods in the Western approaches are relatively simple methods to predict pile settlement, the Russian approach provides a detailed method to estimate single pile and pile group settlement. Details to calculate pile axial capacity and settlement using the Russian and Western approaches are discussed and compared against field test results.

The Effect of Curing Temperature and Rice Husk Ash Addition on the Behaviour of Sulfate-Rich Clay after Lime Stabilization

In the western region of Paraguay, the poor condition of the roads has negatively affected the development of this zone, where the absence of petrous material has led engineers to opt for the stabilization of soils with lime or cement as the main structure for bases and subbases of these roads. In several areas of this region, high sulfate contents have been found both in groundwater and in soils, which, when reacted with lime or cement, generate a new problem instead of solving it. On the other hand, the use of industrial waste as granulated slag and fly ash proved to be a sustainable practice widely used in the manufacture of cement, and now also, in the stabilization of soils worldwide. Works related to soils containing sulfates stabilized either with granulated slag or fly ash and lime shown a good performance in their mechanical behaviour. This research seeks to evaluate the mechanical behaviour of soils with high contents of sulfates stabilized with lime by curing them both, at the normalized temperature (23 ± 2 °C) and at 40 ± 2 °C. Moreover, it attempts to asses if the addition of rice husk ash has a positive influence on the new geomaterial. The 40 ± 2 °C curing temperature was selected trying to simulate the average local temperature in summer and part of spring session whereas rice husk ash is an affordable waste produced in the region. An extensive experimental work, which includes unconfined compression, durability and free swell tests were carried out considering different dry unit weights, lime content and the addition of 20% of rice husk ash. The results showed that the addition of rice husk ash increases the resistance and durability of the material and decreases the expansion of this, moreover, the specimens cured at a temperature of 40 ± 2 °C showed higher resistance, better durability and lower expansion compared to those cured at the normalized temperature of 23 ± 2 °C.

Compression Strength of Treated Fine-Grained Soils with Epoxy or Cement

Geotechnical engineers face many problematic soils upon construction and they have the choice for replacing these soils with more appropriate soils or attempting to improve the engineering properties of the soil through a suitable soil stabilization technique. Mostly, improving soils is environmental, easier and more economical than other solutions. Stabilization soils technique is applied by introducing a cementing agent or by injecting a substance to fill the pore volume. Chemical stabilizers are divided into two groups: traditional agents such as cement or lime and non-traditional agents such as polymers. This paper studies the effect of epoxy additives on the compression strength of four types of soil and then compares with the effect of cement on the compression strength for the same soils. Overall, the epoxy additives are more effective in increasing the strength for different types of soils regardless its classification. On the other hand, there was no clear relation between studied parameters liquid limit, passing No.200, unit weight and between the strength of samples for different types of soils.

The Use of Microorganisms in the Bioleaching of Soils Polluted with Heavy Metals

This paper shows researches in order to extract Cr, Cu and Ni from the polluted soils. Research is based on preliminary studies regarding the usage of Thiobacillus ferrooxidans bacterium (9K medium) for bioleaching of soil polluted with heavy metal (Cu, Cr and Ni). The microorganisms (Thiobacillus ferooxidans) selected directly from polluted soil samples were used in this experimental work. Soil samples used in the experimental research were taken from an area polluted with heavy metals from Romania. The soil samples are subjected to the cleaning process using the 9K medium solution (20 mL and 40 mL, respectively), stirred 200 rpm for 20 hours at a controlled temperature (30 ˚C). During the experiment (0, 2, 4, 8 and 20 h), liquid samples have been extracted and analyzed using the Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer AA-6800 (AAS) in order to determine the Cr, Cu and Ni concentration. Experiments led to the conclusion that these soils can be depolluted by bioleaching, being a biological treatment method involving the use of microorganisms to favor the extraction of Cr, Cu and Ni from polluted soils.

Numerical Investigation of Embankment Settlement Improved by Method of Preloading by Vertical Drains

Time dependent settlement due to loading on soft saturated soils produces many problems such as high consolidation settlements and low consolidation rates. Also, long term consolidation settlement of soft soil underlying the embankment leads to unpredicted settlements and cracks on soil surface. Preloading method is an effective improvement method to solve this problem. Using vertical drains in preloading method is an effective method for improving soft soils. Applying deep soil mixing method on soft soils is another effective method for improving soft soils. There are little studies on using two methods of preloading and deep soil mixing simultaneously. In this paper, the concurrent effect of preloading with deep soil mixing by vertical drains is investigated through a finite element code, Plaxis2D. The influence of parameters such as deep soil mixing columns spacing, existence of vertical drains and distance between them, on settlement and stability factor of safety of embankment embedded on soft soil is investigated in this research.

Numerical Evaluation of Lateral Bearing Capacity of Piles in Cement-Treated Soils

Soft soil is used in many of civil engineering projects like coastal, marine and road projects. Because of low shear strength and stiffness of soft soils, large settlement and low bearing capacity will occur under superstructure loads. This will make the civil engineering activities more difficult and costlier. In the case of soft soils, improvement is a suitable method to increase the shear strength and stiffness for engineering purposes. In recent years, the artificial cementation of soil by cement and lime has been extensively used for soft soil improvement. Cement stabilization is a well-established technique for improving soft soils. Artificial cementation increases the shear strength and hardness of the natural soils. On the other hand, in soft soils, the use of piles to transfer loads to the depths of ground is usual. By using cement treated soil around the piles, high bearing capacity and low settlement in piles can be achieved. In the present study, lateral bearing capacity of short piles in cemented soils is investigated by numerical approach. For this purpose, three dimensional (3D) finite difference software, FLAC 3D is used. Cement treated soil has a strain hardening-softening behavior, because of breaking of bonds between cement agent and soil particle. To simulate such behavior, strain hardening-softening soil constitutive model is used for cement treated soft soil. Additionally, conventional elastic-plastic Mohr Coulomb constitutive model and linear elastic model are used for stress-strain behavior of natural soils and pile. To determine the parameters of constitutive models and also for verification of numerical model, the results of available triaxial laboratory tests on and insitu loading of piles in cement treated soft soil are used. Different parameters are considered in parametric study to determine the effective parameters on the bearing of the piles on cemented treated soils. In the present paper, the effect of various length and height of the artificial cemented area, different diameter and length of the pile and the properties of the materials are studied. Also, the effect of choosing a constitutive model for cemented treated soils in the bearing capacity of the pile is investigated.

Numerical Investigation of Soft Clayey Soil Improved by Soil-Cement Columns under Harmonic Load

Deep soil mixing is one of the improvement methods in geotechnical engineering which is widely used in soft soils. This article investigates the consolidation behavior of a soft clay soil which is improved by soil-cement column (SCC) by numerical modeling using Plaxis2D program. This behavior is simulated under vertical static and cyclic load which is applied on the soil surface. The static load problem is the simulation of a physical model test in an axisymmetric condition which uses a single SCC in the model center. The results of numerical modeling consist of settlement of soft soil composite, stress on soft soil and column, and excessive pore water pressure in the soil show a good correspondence with the test results. The response of soft soil composite to the cyclic load in vertical direction also compared with the static results. Also the effects of two variables namely the cement content used in a SCC and the area ratio (the ratio of the diameter of SCC to the diameter of composite soil model, a) is investigated. The results show that the stress on the column with the higher value of a, is lesser compared with the stress on other columns. Different rate of consolidation and excessive pore pressure distribution is observed in cyclic load problem. Also comparing the results of settlement of soil shows higher compressibility in the cyclic load problem.

Assessment of the Biological Nitrogen Fixation in Soybean Sown in Different Types of Moroccan Soils

The present study aims to assess the biological nitrogen fixation in the soybean tested in different Moroccan soils combined with the rhizobial inoculation. These effects were evaluated by the plant growth mainly by the aerial biomass production, total nitrogen content and the proportion of the nitrogen fixed. This assessment clearly shows that the inoculation with bacteria increases the growth of soybean. Five different soils and a control (peat) were used. The rhizobial inoculation was performed by applying the peat that contained a mixture of 2 strains Sinorhizobium fredii HH103 and Bradyrhizobium. The biomass, the total nitrogen content and the proportion of nitrogen fixed were evaluated under different treatments. The essay was realized at the greenhouse the Faculty of Sciences, Moulay Ismail University. The soybean has shown a great response for the parameters assessed. Moreover, the best response was reported by the inoculated plants compared to non- inoculated and to the absolute control. Finally, good production and the best biological nitrogen fixation present an important ecological technology to improve the sustainable production of soybean and to ensure the increase of the fertility of soils.

Suitability of Class F Flyash for Construction Industry: An Indian Scenario

The present study evaluates the properties of class F fly ash as a replacement of natural materials in civil engineering construction industry. The low-lime flash similar to class F is the prime variety generated in India, although it has significantly smaller volumes of high-lime fly ash as compared to class C. The chemical and physical characterization of the sample is carried out with the number of experimental approaches in order to investigate all relevant features present in the samples. For chemical analysis, elementary quantitative results from point analysis and scanning electron microscopy (SEM)/dispersive spectroscopy (EDS) techniques were used to identify the element images of different fractions. The physical properties found very close to the range of common soils. Furthermore, the fly ash-based bricks were prepared by the same sample of class F fly ash and the results of compressive strength similar to that of Standard Clay Brick Grade 1 available in the local market of India.

The Influence of the Geogrid Layers on the Bearing Capacity of Layered Soils

Many classical bearing capacity theories assume that the natural soil's layers are homogenous for determining the bearing capacity of the soil. But, in many practical projects, we encounter multi-layer soils. Geosynthetic as reinforcement materials have been extensively used in the construction of various structures. In this paper, numerical analysis of the Plate Load Test (PLT) using of ABAQUS software in double-layered soils with different thicknesses of sandy and gravelly layers reinforced with geogrid was considered. The PLT is one of the common filed methods to calculate parameters such as soil bearing capacity, the evaluation of the compressibility and the determination of the Subgrade Reaction module. In fact, the influence of the geogrid layers on the bearing capacity of the layered soils is investigated. Finally, the most appropriate mode for the distance and number of reinforcement layers is determined. Results show that using three layers of geogrid with a distance of 0.3 times the width of the loading plate has the highest efficiency in bearing capacity of double-layer (sand and gravel) soils. Also, the significant increase in bearing capacity between unreinforced and reinforced soil with three layers of geogrid is caused by the condition that the upper layer (gravel) thickness is equal to the loading plate width.

Evaluation of Shear Strength Parameters of Rudsar Sandy Soil Stabilized with Waste Rubber Chips

The use of waste rubber chips not only can be of great importance in terms of the environment, but also can be used to increase the shear strength of soils. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the variation of the internal friction angle of liquefiable sandy soil using waste rubber chips. For this purpose, the geotechnical properties of unmodified and modified soil samples by waste lining rubber chips have been evaluated and analyzed by performing the triaxial consolidated drained test. In order to prepare the laboratory specimens, the sandy soil in part of Rudsar shores in Gilan province, north of Iran with high liquefaction potential has been replaced by two percent of waste rubber chips. Samples have been compressed until reaching the two levels of density of 15.5 and 16.7 kN/m3. Also, in order to find the optimal length of chips in sandy soil, the rectangular rubber chips with the widths of 0.5 and 1 cm and the lengths of 0.5, 1, and 2 cm were used. The results showed that the addition of rubber chips to liquefiable sandy soil greatly increases the shear resistance of these soils. Also, it can be seen that decreasing the width and increasing the length-to-width ratio of rubber chips has a direct impact on the shear strength of the modified soil samples with rubber chips.

Determining G-γ Degradation Curve in Cohesive Soils by Dilatometer and in situ Seismic Tests

This article discusses the possibility of using dilatometer tests (DMT) together with in situ seismic tests (MASW) in order to get the shape of G-g degradation curve in cohesive soils (clay, silty clay, silt, clayey silt and sandy silt). MASW test provides the small soil stiffness (Go from vs) at very small strains and DMT provides the stiffness of the soil at ‘work strains’ (MDMT). At different test locations, dilatometer shear stiffness of the soil has been determined by the theory of elasticity. Dilatometer shear stiffness has been compared with the theoretical G-g degradation curve in order to determine the typical range of shear deformation for different types of cohesive soil. The analysis also includes factors that influence the shape of the degradation curve (G-g) and dilatometer modulus (MDMT), such as the overconsolidation ratio (OCR), plasticity index (IP) and the vertical effective stress in the soil (svo'). Parametric study in this article defines the range of shear strain gDMT and GDMT/Go relation depending on the classification of a cohesive soil (clay, silty clay, clayey silt, silt and sandy silt), function of density (loose, medium dense and dense) and the stiffness of the soil (soft, medium hard and hard). The article illustrates the potential of using MASW and DMT to obtain G-g degradation curve in cohesive soils.

Collapse Load Analysis of Reinforced Concrete Pile Group in Liquefying Soils under Lateral Loading

The ultimate load analysis of RC pile groups has assumed a lot of significance under liquefying soil conditions, especially due to post-earthquake studies of 1964 Niigata, 1995 Kobe and 2001 Bhuj earthquakes. The present study reports the results of numerical simulations on pile groups subjected to monotonically increasing lateral loads under design amounts of pile axial loading. The soil liquefaction has been considered through the non-linear p-y relationship of the soil springs, which can vary along the depth/length of the pile. This variation again is related to the liquefaction potential of the site and the magnitude of the seismic shaking. As the piles in the group can reach their extreme deflections and rotations during increased amounts of lateral loading, a precise modeling of the inelastic behavior of the pile cross-section is done, considering the complete stress-strain behavior of concrete, with and without confinement, and reinforcing steel, including the strain-hardening portion. The possibility of the inelastic buckling of the individual piles is considered in the overall collapse modes. The model is analysed using Riks analysis in finite element software to check the post buckling behavior and plastic collapse of piles. The results confirm the kinds of failure modes predicted by centrifuge test results reported by researchers on pile group, although the pile material used is significantly different from that of the simulation model. The extension of the present work promises an important contribution to the design codes for pile groups in liquefying soils.